This dinner we made whole chicken in the Schlemmertopf.
We started off with a nice mix of spices:
black pepper and
Together with that we cut a leek into three pieces and chopped a red chili, which we spread out on top of the chicken.
I have found that it makes for a better dish seasoning wise to decide on the amount of spices before one puts them in the pan or stew, etc. Putting them straight into the food I tend to be a bit restrictive, whereas if I place them on a plate or in the mortar and then pour them into the food I tend to be closer to the sweet spot. The past few times I have done this way I have ended up with close to perfect amount of the spices I selected. There is still a long way to go for me to get the whole composition between the tastes right, but in terms of using the spices to bring out the flavours of the food this seems to be working for me at least.
After pre-soaking the Schlemmertopf, mortaring the spices in need of that and chopping the chili it all was placed in the pot and put into the oven at 140 °C.
As sides we made white cabbage wedges that we roasted in the oven after taking out the chicken, that we left to rest in the Schlemmertopf.
Finally we served the chicken and the cabbage wedges with a few leaves of lettuce and some freshly grated carrots and red beets.
With our new portion-sized cast iron ramekins we have had the possibility to explore some new ways of presenting as well as cooking our food. Nothing too surprising or ground-breaking (yet) but well some additional inspiration.
The last week we bought some pork loin which we thought would be nice to make pulled pork with. We have done it before, but every time one revisits a dish some new factor is added. One gets a different feel for which spices should be included. The ratio meat to sauce changes somewhat or one alters the oven temperature and time slightly. So, it is always interesting to see how the new dish turns out.
This time we used tomato sauce and garlic as the base together with the loin of pork. The spices were black pepper, cummin, ginger, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. The whole thing was mixed into the Schlemmertopf and cooked in the oven for almost four hours. Unfortunately on a slightly low temperature for the meat to really fall apart, but the taste could not have been better!
As a side for the pulled pork we made sticks of carrots and parsnips that we roasted in the oven along-side with sweet mini peppers that we stuffed with matured feta cheese.
Since we figured that the carrots and parsnips needed to be in the oven longer than the peppers and on a higher temperature than the pulled pork we took out the Schlemmertopf with the pulled pork and let it rest whilst the vegetables we roasted on the higher temperature. With 15 minutes left before serving we put the peppers in as well. The peppers were placed in our new portion-sized ramekins which as a really nice way of serving them in the end, since they kept the heat nicely when serving.
Whilst waiting for the vegetables to finish in the oven we pulled the pork apart. And then we put it all together and enjoyed a really nice dinner with a glass of red wine to go with the food. The spicing of the pulled pork turned out really, really well. The cinnamon and ginger together with almost too much cayenne pepper made a perfect combination.
A heavy piece of gammon in the middle of January? Probably more common as Christmas ham. But if you don’t want to spend unnecessary money, it’s a really bad idea to buy this before Christmas when it is very expensive. As soon as Christmas is over, it’s possible to get them almost for free!
This one of almost 4 kg(!) we managed to get for 1/7 of the original price. There is nothing wrong with the meat, we still only buy meat that is certified organic.
The first pieces of the cooked ham we had together with a red cabbage salad with olive oil, apple cider vinegar, some apple and mustard and oven roasted carrots with a large click of butter on top.
It’s very simple to cook the ham. We used the Schlemmertopf to make sure it wouldn’t become dry and had it in the oven at 175°C until a inner temperature of 75°C.
The normal thing to do is to remove the skin/fat layer from the top before serving but that is so ridiculous and makes me angry. It shouldn’t be thrown away because it contains essential fatty acids and especially collagen, which is very healthy to us!
We surely need to enjoy this piece of gammon for some time. It is slightly different to the uncured meat we usually have since it is salted and also have some sugar and preservatives added. Just a very small amount though, which probably won’t affect us.
The funny thing is that we couldn’t resist to buy another one the day after, pre-cooked though, for 1/14 of the original price. Gammonified!
Magnus’ parents bought half a deer the other week and we were lucky enough to get a few cuts from them. In addition to some minced meat, which went into a really tasty meat loaf, and organ meats we also got one shoulder and one chuck steak.
The venison shoulder we decided to cook in the Schlemmertopf together with turnip and celeriac.
After chopping the turnip and celeriac into semi-small pieces we put the shoulder and vegetables together in the Schlemmertopf, seasoned with bay leaves and black pepper, and added a jar of venison bone broth.
We cooked the venison in the oven for almost five hours, but at almost too low a temperature, 120 °C. It turned out really nicely though, but not as tender as it could have been if we had dared turning up the temperature slightly.
As a side we steamed white cabbage and enjoyed it all with a click of butter on the top together with a branch of fresh rosemary. Not the most appealing presentation maybe, but it tasted wonderful!
Pulled pork is always a favorite! But it doesn’t always have to be made with that tomato barbecue sauce. Here is a variant with Café de Paris flavors, which was very simple by just adding a block of butter (literally!) and some seasoning to the loin of pork before leaving it to cook in the oven in a clay pot until tender.
The pulled pork was served with green salad and steamed cabbage, nothing else is needed really since there is so much flavor in the meat.
Café de Paris pulled pork
Loin of pork, with or without bone
Block of butter
Salt and pepper
Place the loin of pork in a clay pot or something similar.
Cover in the spices.
Chop the garlic and chili and place on top together with the block of butter.
Leave in the oven at 125°C for at least 5 hours.
Pull the meat apart using forks.
Not difficult at all but a very delicious dinner loaded with healthy fat! Please make sure to use grass-fed butter and organic raised pork meat.
Enough food to make a couple of nice lunch boxes for work as well!
Today we made a whole chicken in the Schlemmertopf. It turned out really well! The Schlemmertopf keeps both the moisture and the flavours in the meat really well, so it was not too much of a surprise that the chicken was perfectly moist and tender.
After placing the chicken in the Schlemmertopf we sliced some onion and garlic and put around the chicken together with a small jar of bone broth as well as a few bay leaves. Make sure to soak the Schlemmertopf before putting all the ingredients in and before placing it in the oven. When the clay is dry the heat from the oven might make it break…! So, that’s a worthwhile precaution.
Then the whole thing was placed in the oven at around 175 °C for about two hours.
Together with the chicken we steamed some white cabbage as well as roasted some broccoli and sweet potatoes in the oven together with the chicken during the last hour before serving.
Sorry for the boring picture of the final plating. It was one of those days where we lost patience (read were really hungry) in combination with a not very photogenic mix of food. But, hey it tasted marvelous!
We were able to get some loin of pork, which means it’s time to do some pulled pork! I guess this variant isn’t even close to the original, but we don’t bother following recipes that often so we took what we had at home for the moment.
This was served with oven baked point cabbage and some fried carrots and onion. And lime to add some extra acidity!
Pulled pork in spicy tomato sauce
Ginger, fresh and dried
Salt & pepper
Apple cider vinegar
Loin of pork, organic!
Put all the ingredients for the sauce, i.e canned tomatoes with the onion and all the spices and a splash of apple cider vinegar, into a saucepan and let it boil together for as long as your patience holds.
Place the loin of pork in your Schlemmertopf or cast iron pot and cover it with the tomato sauce. Put into the oven at 125°C for at least five hours. Preferably more. It should be possible to tear the meat apart using two forks. That’s your pulled pork!
This variant got a bit saucy, but there’s nothing wrong with that. Save the leftover sauce and cook a nice soup or something similar from it.